Abstract: Testing the Measurement Equivalence of the Scale of Economic Self-Sufficiency across English and Spanish-Speaking Partner Violence Survivors (Society for Social Work and Research 26th Annual Conference - Social Work Science for Racial, Social, and Political Justice)

562P Testing the Measurement Equivalence of the Scale of Economic Self-Sufficiency across English and Spanish-Speaking Partner Violence Survivors

Saturday, January 15, 2022
Marquis BR Salon 6, ML 2 (Marriott Marquis Washington, DC)
* noted as presenting author
Iris Cardenas, PhD, LSW, Doctoral Student, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
Hsiu-Fen Lin, MSW, PhD Candidate, Rutgers University, NJ
Gretchen L. Hoge, PhD, Assistant Professor, Lewis University
Background and Purpose: In an effort to decrease economic barriers to leaving abusive relationships and to support intimate partner violence (IPV) survivors in avoiding revictimization, one of the aims of economic empowerment interventions is to increase survivors’ economic self-efficacy. Despite this increased focus on survivors’ economic self-efficacy, few studies have validated scales to accurately measure this construct, and none have assessed the scale’s psychometric properties in Spanish–the second most widely used language in the United States. Although the Scale of Economic Self-Efficacy (ESE) was previously validated to measure economic self-efficacy among IPV survivors, its measurement equivalence across Spanish and English languages has not been examined. To address this gap, this study seeks to: (1) test the factor structure of the Scale of ESE across English and Spanish-speaking IPV survivors; and (2) assess between-group differences on measurement invariance.

Methods: Data were collected cross-sectionally in face-to-face and phone interviews with English-speaking (n=209) and Spanish-speaking (n=207) IPV survivors from seven domestic violence organizations in New Jersey, New York, and Puerto Rico.. Most participants (89%) had at least one child and more than half (62%) identified as Latina or Hispanic. Their mean age was 40, and one in three reported a household annual income of less than $10,000.

Multi-group Confirmatory Factor Analysis was used to assess the validity of the Scale of ESE as a first-order, one factor structure for English and Spanish-speaking IPV survivors, and to test the equality of the Scale of ESE parameters across the two groups. We used nested models with increasingly restrictive set of parameters by Amos 27.

Results: The configural invariance model indicated that one-factor structure of the Scale of ESE is supported across English and Spanish-speaking IPV survivors (X2= 116.923; DF= 66; CFI=.967; TLI=0.955; RMSEA=.043). The measurement weights model indicated equivalence of factors loading across the two groups (X2= 127.092; DF= 75; CFI=.966; TLI=0.960; RMSEA=.041). The measurement intercepts model did not achieve full invariance (X2= 159.019; DF= 85; CFI=.952; TLI=0.949; RMSEA=.046), instead partial invariance was achieved (X2= 147.563; DF= 84; CFI=.959; TLI=0.956; RMSEA=.043) due to one item not performing equally across the groups. The measurement residual model (X2= 116.923; DF= 66; CFI=.959; TLI=0.962; RMSEA=.040) indicated that error variance was similar across groups.

Conclusions and Implications: The Scale of ESE was confirmed for usage with English and Spanish-speaking IPV survivors. The construct structure and factor loading for each of the scale items was equal across the two groups. Although mean comparison is possible across groups, we caution researchers when comparing mean responses because partial scalar equivalence was established. One possible explanation is that English and Spanish-speaking IPV survivors interpret one item of this scale differently. However, it is also possible that the non-equivalence was due to trivial and not systematic differences. Thus, our study warrants further exploration on the conceptualization and interpretation of economic self-efficacy across English and Spanish-speaking groups.